Shiny Trees

Discussion in 'Scratchin' & Bashin'' started by MasonJar, Feb 21, 2003.

  1. Lighthorseman

    Lighthorseman Active Member

    'Tisn't A Tree...'Tis ARTWORK!!

    What a gem, Andrew! Like I didn't have enough half-finished projects I simply must try this.

    A quick question to both MasonJar and MattHydro...what type of thinned wood stain should one use? Where might I find this? Sounds like a great idea for all-'round wood staining.:)
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Re: 'Tisn't A Tree...'Tis ARTWORK!!

    Thanks for the great complements, aart and Steve!

    Can't answer the wood stain question for you, since I did not use that technique. Robin (Matthyro) said in an earlier reply to just use whatever you had on hand.

    On one tree, I did try painting the centre of each disk brown, but the effect was not visible once the tree was assembled. I did not bother to do it with other trees.

  3. aartwmich

    aartwmich Member

    Well I gave it a shot...a half-*ssed one anyway, just to get a feel for the materials. I used a brown magic marker for staining the bamboo skewer. The green is kind of a funky color, I'll have to play with painting it or use a different brand of pad. It is rather time consuming, but once ya get the circles cut you can pick at em while watching

    Andrew, what scale are you modeling? How tall is your tree and how wide at the base, in inches?

    Thanks for the idea, I will defintely use this in the future.

    Attached Files:

  4. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    Nice tree IMA. Don't know what others think but most real trees I see have grey bark in various shades. I don't remember seeing a brown tree trunk anywhere. Now having said that, I found myself using brown like you did IMA. :eek: Now do I go back and try to change the colours or just do it with new trees?
  5. aartwmich

    aartwmich Member

    Well Matthyro.....I think real pine trees often have reddish bark. So if you made deciduous trees maybe you should go back and paint those trunks gray uhhuh lol ;) teehee
  6. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    I wouldn't worry too much about the color, aart.

    In nature the leaves come in every possible shade of green - from a very bright yellow-green in spring over bluish shades to almost black. In fact we have a cedar in our garden which has almost exactly the hue of your beautiful little tree.

    The trunks are also very varied. It pays to make a walk and take note of all the color shades. Like Robin said, most are grey with a brownish tinge, but there are also reddish browns, silvery maroons, dark gray-greens (moss and algae on the trunk!), etc etc, not to forget the 'white' birch trunks (beautiful, but seldom modeled convincingly :( ).

    So I'd say, as long as it pleases you, it's alright. And if some nit-pickers are coming along telling you that this trunk was just a little bit too bright and the leaves a little too bluish, just tell them that your tree was the product of a newly bred race of a Dwarf Sugar Fir, Pinea sugarica (sounds good, doesn't it?) :D :D :D

  7. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery


    I like your tree! What scale is it? Or what scale is the LPB (to use jon-monon's term)?

    I am modelling HO. The tree by the station is the biggest one I have made - it is about 6" tall and about 1 1/2" across at the base. That would make it... ~45 scale feet high by ~12 scale feet in diameter?

  8. aartwmich

    aartwmich Member

    Thanks Andrew, not a bad first attempt huh. I defintely need to get out the tweezers tho or the small curved manicure scissors. Course then I may just be lookin toooo close.

    The LPF (little plastic is HO, as is my layout. The tree foliage is 3/4 across the base and 1 3/4 tall. Approx. 5 sc ft across base and 10 sc ft tall.

    Ron..I'm not too worried about the green color, although it DOESN'T please me and I just don't think it's right for a spruce or fir tree which is what that shape represents best. I also thought it resembled the color of a cedar.

    As far as the trunk color goes, I was just pickin on Robin ;) . He has a good point and when it comes to makin trees for the layout I will play with colorations more.
  9. Lighthorseman

    Lighthorseman Active Member

    More trouble Than It's Worth??

    Well, here's my effort. I'd like a little advice as to what type of potscrubbers you folks found. The one I used was extremely tightly woven, and simply DID NOT unravel beautifully as yours did. I mean, should one really have to use a pair of pliers to get these apart? Are there places where I can find only green potscrubbers? In order to get a few green ones, I had to go with packages that also contained all sorts of other colours.

    I found my tree to be severely mediocre, although it has possibilities as a background tree in my logging area.
    Anyhow, here's my non-stained, non dullcoated first tree.

    Attached Files:

  10. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Hi Steve,

    I think the tree looks good - nice shape to it. Anyway, to answer your question, I use the no-name (all-green) scrubbers from Loblaws or Independent Grocer.

    I can pry the disk into three layers with my fingers. It doesn't fall apart easily, but is not difficult either. I do have to use tweezers or pliers to pull little chunks out of the edge so the disks are not perfectly round.

    I wasn't sure how the layers would translate to O-scale. I have seen the "pot scrubbers" that are sold for paint stripping. They are much coarser (individual strands are thicker), so the texture might be better for bigger scales.

    Last thing - for aart - my tree in the pictures above is only 30 scale feet high, not 45 as I stated before.

  11. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    That is a far less complicated method of making pine trees than my branch by branch technique. I'll have to try it, and see if I can make it provide the results I want.
    I have seen this technique used before, but the results were not as good as what you've done. Looks good!
  12. aartwmich

    aartwmich Member

    I found some '3M Scotchbrite' pads that seemed a better color, this is the 'ground' in the pic. But I found that they are a lighter color inside, see the 'bush' next to the tree. It's obvious that the surface of these pads are painted or coated with something and that coating may contain an abrasive.

    It's pretty easy to separate into 3 layers, but I found that in order to pull some chunks out it was easier to make some small cuts radially around the edges, trimming some to points and then picking some chunks out. I'm thinking those small little manicure scissors would work good for this, but the material is pretty hard on the scissors.

    Its kinda of labor intensive but looks better than most any other spruces/firs I've seen. It's ALWAYS fun to try new techniques!! :D ;)

    Attached Files:

  13. Lighthorseman

    Lighthorseman Active Member

    My Idea...

    Here's a twist...I'm using the ones I make as background tall pine trees for my logging area. I carved up a bit of balsa, scraped on a little bark, and stuck the bamboo skewer into the top of the balsa "trunk".

    Not a great shot, and still needs work, but it's an idea.

    Attached Files:

  14. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    "Wild" trees?

    Thanks for the pic and the idea Steve.

    I have been looking at my trees, and coming to the conclusion that I need to make some of them more "wild" looking.


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